When Matt Furstenburg, went looking for a product that would prolong the life of his football gloves, he approached Professor Srinivasa Raghavan and his team in Complex Fluids and Nanomaterials Laboratory at the University of Maryland’s Dept. of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. 

Raghavan’s group has extensive experience developing products made with strategically modified chitosan, a natural biopolymer made from crab shells.

Because it is non-toxic and adheres to skin, tissue and cells, chitosan has previously been used to develop blood-clotting bandages, foams and surgical sprays.

“We found it sticks to football gloves pretty well, too!”

says co-founder Chanda Arya (Ph.D. ’14) one of Raghavan’s former students.

Chanda Arya, along with co-founder and lead inventor, Kevin Diehn, further altered the chitosan to discover alcohol soluble gel formulations for quick-drying thin polymer films. These films were rigorously tested to ensure that they didn’t exceed the tackiness of existing football gloves and did not transfer any residue to the ball.

The lab is where it all started and where we continue to develop advanced products that meet the individual needs and exacting standards of professional and amateur athletes.